My son knows a new word. His first word where he specifically uses a sound for context. The first word that he understands.
This past weekend, in the cacaphony and chaos that is Thanksgiving at my In-laws, he wrapped his arms around my legs, tilted his head back to gaze at my bent over face, and in a very clear and demanding way, said “UP?”, his tiny blue eyes seriously studying mine for recognition in his question. He pronounced both letters seperately, and its endearing staccato sound was more phonetic. It took me a moment to realize he was saying the word Up, and when I did get it, his happiness was evident to all around him with happy babbles as he was swung up into my arms.
“Uh-Pah?” He would say, arms extended, or hands patting our laps. “Uh-Pah?” he said to my mother-in-law as she bent over to heft him. “Uh-Pah?” he would say to my father, tugging on a pant-leg. “Uh-Pah?” he said as his high chair was set up for lunch, pulling on the foot rest, eager for his meal. The same word was used to denote when he wanted out of the high chair, straining against the seatbelt, yelling “up-up-up-up-uh-pah!!”
All weekend, he tried out his new word on every unsuspecting adult within visiting range. We watched him notice someone sit down, and he would drop his toy, skitter over, and after attempting to lever himself up onto whatever seat they were sitting near, he would, in his soft voice, look at them and say “Uh-Pah?”.
No one could resist him, and he spent much time getting up and down from arms, in and out of laps, and amazing those around him with his newfound vocabulary. He muttered it under his breath as he climed onto the fireplace hearth. He babbled it as he ran across the floor in the morning to my comforter encased form, eager to start the day in the light filled spare room, my own body wishing it was still night.
It is still endearing, exciting, and encouraging each time he wants up into our arms and tells us so. Give it a few more days, and I am sure it won’t be, but for now, I am enjoying his newfound communication tool for all it is worth.
We are still looking up.